Gulfport officially became a city in December 1898. Although it was conceived, even named, earlier than that date by Southern railroad pioneer William Harris Hardy, it wasn't until Pennsylvania railroad magnate Joseph T. Jones stepped in with his millions that it became reality.
Both envisioned a port and harbors and a railroad that would bring South Mississippi's yellow gold - pine - to the water to be shipped out in a port city.
It was not long before pleasure boats joined the working boats, and a yacht club and pavilion social center was in place by 1903.
Through the decades, the Small Craft Harbor grew and developed, and it was filled with boats of all kinds, sailing and motorized. Katrina dealt a hard blow.
"We absolutely are intending on rebuilding the Small Craft Harbor," said Mayor Brent Warr.
"We are going to pull the pilings damaged beyond reuse and hope to come back with a harbor much more up to today's standards but keeping it available for all citizens and keeping it affordable. It will be as nice a harbor as we can make it."
The sailing and swimming programs will restart in 2006, likely before the clubhouse is rebuilt.
- KAT BERGERON